For the first time in 58 years, life is about to get easier for the world’s oldest living conjoined twins, Ronnie and Donnie Galyon.
Thanks to Christian Youth Corps Inc. (CYC), a Machias, N.Y.-based charity, the Galyons will soon have a new home custom built to accommodate all their unique needs. The residence will be attached to and essentially double the size of their younger brother Jim’s home just outside of Dayton, Ohio.
The twins, who are attached at the abdomen and face each other, currently live in a small home about four miles from Jim and his wife, Mary. The couple has cared for Ronnie and Donnie since 1991, when they ended a long career of exhibiting themselves in sideshows. Having earned plenty of money from curious onlookers, they were able to buy their own place.
With age has come added weight along with weakened muscles and joints, making care for them increasingly more difficult. “They’re at the point now where just getting to a restroom is very, very hard on them, quite frankly,” Jim said. “It’s hard just to walk that 10 paces to get there.”
The 936-square-foot addition will feature 4-foot-wide hallways and doorway entrances to allow space for their new custom-made wheelchair. Extra support in the floor will bear the added heft of the chair, which weighs nearly 360 pounds. The twins themselves weigh just over 400 pounds. …